Friday, March 30, 2012
My website has information on upcoming trips, Leo's Den, and is a store for books, CDs, and DVDs.
You can also get my books on Amazon.
My Facebook page is updated several times per week. Come be my fan for my latest musings.
I speak at Common Grounds twice on the last Sunday of the month. The video is also available.
Some of my accomplishments are listed at Unity Church's website.
Some of my speaking engagements are listed with Work and Wellness.
If you like Classic Leo, my old blog is still available.
Friday, March 23, 2012
Always in a state of reflecting on my self and my journey, this novel is about seeing our relationship with God differently from the way I was raised as an Anglican. Today I see my life in partnership with God, not waiting for God to initiate actions but rather knowing that I have been given, by God, the power to act and create. This concept was argued by Pelagius against the teachings of Saint Augustine of Hippo; a similar belief was celebrated by the Muslim poet Rumi.
Unfortunately, Pelagius was condemned in the Fourth Century as a heretic and banished to Africa. Today I realize that I’m a Pelagian: hence a heretic. And I’m happy about this. I intend to put excerpts from my book on my Facebook page and I am sure it will create some chatter in the recovery community.
Here is an excerpt:
Life is a series of choices, intelligent or ignorant, and the result determines happiness or disaster. An alternative position championed by Saint Augustine, is that God’s grace alone is influencing the good choices we make, and therefore we cannot and should not take credit. Pelagius agrees that God’s grace abounds but that does not change the fact that human beings have been given the freedom to act; if they are to be condemned for the evil actions that they create then they should be praised for their virtuous behaviors.
I’m not waiting for God to stop bad things happening to me. I’m initiating, by my choice, a life of bliss by my partnership with God. I’m not sinful, I’m blessed. And yes, I’m the Happy Heretic.
Monday, March 19, 2012
I spend a bit of time talking about the notion of addiction to religion. Balance is necessary and attainable in every aspect of life, and balance between religion or spirituality and other facets of your life is necessary as well.
Compiled for you, here, are 4 pieces of video that I did as an interview on this very topic. I had previously posted one to my Facebook page, but thought you might like to have them together to watch in succession.
Please feel free to share this with anyone you feel could benefit from more balance in their daily life.
When God Becomes a Drug - Part 1
When God Becomes a Drug - Part 2
When God Becomes a Drug - Part 3
When God Becomes a Drug - Part 4
Tuesday, March 13, 2012
Please note: The most up-to-date information can be found at: http://leobooth.blogspot.com/2012/06/updated-leos-den.html
There is updated information on Leo's Den from the last time I blogged about it in January. I'd love to have you stay there! Please read on for additional information and contact me with your questions. Also, if you've stayed at Leo's Den in the past, please send me your photos.
Many of you know that I have a comfortable home in England (Lancashire). With this in mind, I wish to make my house available to my American friends. At the moment it is being completely re-decorated and it will be available for rent in May 2012. (But trust me when I say it is most comfortable).
About the House: This attractive detached house has three bedrooms, and will comfortably sleep up to five people, with a kitchen, dining room and two lounge areas; also two bathrooms and showers with a guest toilet downstairs. There is a garden at the back and front to just sit and relax.
Where is it? The house is located outside the city of Manchester, close to Yorkshire, Stratford on Avon (Shakespeare's home), the countryside where the T.V. series All Creatures Great and Small was filmed, The Lake District, Auckland Castle, Liverpool (birthplace of the Beatles) and close to Jane Austen and the Bronte sisters' home. Scotland is three hours drive and there is a direct railway connection between Manchester and London. Of course, for soccer fans you can see Manchester United play at Old Trafford.
In order to see the beauty of England's countryside or visit Scotland, Ireland and Wales you need a car. This is what makes visiting England, with hotels and car rentals priced in "the English pound" so expensive. With this in mind, I've included the use of my personal Mercedes (E Series) in the daily rental. Also, a number of people have indicated that they don't feel comfortable driving "on the other side of the road" in England. Do't worry, we can provide a driver for a few hours at the beginning of your trip to help you navigate the roads. This truly makes Leo's Den a great deal.
I've arranged for Auntie Christine to be the housekeeper and point person for your stay. Anything you need for the house, she will try to accommodate and meet your every need. She's a fantastic person. You'll enjoy Auntie Christine.
The Olympic Games
Beginning in July, many of you know that England will be hosting the International Olympic Games in
London. Manchester is a rail trip (2 hours, 30 minutes) from London and visitors could stay at my home, visit London, then return to enjoy the beautiful countryside of Great Britain (ie England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland). For those who are interested in catching some of the events at the Olympics, this could be the ideal arrangement.
Queen Elizabeth 60 Year Jubilee
Queen Elizabeth and some of the Royal Family will be visiting different parts of the country to celebrate her sixty years on the throne. Why not join the crowds and experience the royal wave; perhaps see Charles and
Camilla chatting to the local people or enjoying a beer in a local pub? It's all happening this year. Have you thought about reserving dates over the holidays or in 2013? Well, celebrating Christmas and New Year in England is fantastic; fireworks, Bangers and Mash, Christmas pudding and crackers!
How do I make a reservation for my vacation at Leo's Den?
Contact my office at 562.494.2900. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org We have a master calendar and all your dates (if available) will be confirmed when payment is received. Everything is as above, all you need to do is pay for the gasoline and food you require during your stay and then enjoy England at your own pace or, if you are feeling adventurous, explore Europe; after all, Paris, France is not that far away!
What is the cost?
It is simply $250.00 per day (including use of the car and domestic services provided by Auntie Christine). Basic snacks will be provided upon arrival at the house and I'll arrange for somebody to provide orientation for driving in England.
I want you to feel at home in my home and for those of you who are interested in AA recovery, I will provide a list of scheduled meetings. However, I do realize that not everyone is in recovery and so everyone is able to rent my house.
If you have any questions don't hesitate to contact us.
Friday, March 9, 2012
Spirituality = Love
February is the month when we celebrate Valentine’s Day; the Love Month. And we usually associate the celebration of Valentine’s Day with thoughts about those in a relationship with another; wife, partner or significant other…but it is also the occasion when we can broaden our horizons and think about the concept of love itself. What is it? Where does it come from? What does this feeling do for the individual?
Before we explore the concept of love I do not wish to minimize the power and healing that comes from loving another person; to love and be loved is a wonderful thing. Most people pray or wish for this experience in their lives; not to have to go through life alone. And I really get this. Over the years I’ve been in love-based relationships and they’ve certainly made me a happy man. I cherish each and every one and I regret none of these experiences.
But are we really alone if we do not have a partner? That brings me to this wonderful wordspirituality. For me, and I realize I’m only speaking for myself, spirituality is the demonstration of love; it involves taking something of the divine that exists in every life force and manifesting it in a thousand and one ways. It can never be fully explained and yet it carries within it something of the Creation: When we express love in our spiritual attitude and behavior we bring about something that was not in existence before the act of loving. In this sense, the act of loving is a demonstration of the divine.
I’ve come to the conclusion, after years of searching the many aspects of spirituality in recovery, that it needs to include a love of self. As Oscar Wilde says: To love yourself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.
Tragically, some religious messages seemed to infer that if you love yourself you were considered to be selfish and arrogant, but healthy spirituality affirms that in order to love another we need to have a balanced love of self. This love of self avoids the dangerous slide into co-dependency, where we can only experience love if we have somebody, anybody, in our lives. I’ve come to the conclusion that, for me, the spiritual awakening involves a love and genuine respect for myself. And this spiritual love moves us beyond the human dimension; we begin to love life, nature, creation itself. God has placed us in a world, indeed a Universe, that generates pleasure, mystery and mysticism. The fact that we do not understand everything does not stop us loving the experience of this life force.
Last year I visited Cambodia and Vietnam along with other spiritual travelers and recovering friends. The year before that we experienced Egypt and for this year, I’m inviting people to join me for my Spiritual Journey to Southern India in September. And I’m loving the anticipation of all that we will see. Indeed, I’m creating the journey, making a comprehensive and interesting itinerary, inviting speakers to explain the history, culture and religion of the parts of India that we will be visiting. If you are interested in joining us all the information you need is featured on my website.
Spirituality reflects an aspect of love that seeks to explore the divine in all its many and varied dimensions. As someone who is healing from the lost years of stagnation, created by alcohol, I want to see and taste the world. Yes, I’ve grown to love people and, incredibly, allowed others to love me, but also developed a love and appreciation for life itself.
As we acknowledge February, the “Love Month”, I hope you are able to experience the many aspects of divine love throughout the year that surround us every day. Finding a spiritual fascination in the varied manifestations of love that are part of this thing we call life. As I heard said in a support meeting recently; don’t leave before you experience the miracle.